On Tuesday the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), and assorted items to Sokoto State to contain the Coronavirus.
Mrs. Gloria Enueze, the Sokoto State UNFPA Programme Officer, presented the items to the state government at the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC), State Specialist Hospital, Sokoto.
The Programme Officer disclosed that the UNFPA was supporting the fight against the ravaged COVID-19 pandemic in the country through the EU-UN Basket Fund in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic.
Mrs. Enueze stated that the support was for the implementation of risk communication and community engagement activities.
According to the UNFPA official, the intervention is designed to contain the spread of the pandemic, enhance access to quality reproductive healthcare services, as well as, mitigate the effects of the pandemic.
She further narrated that the activities aimed at reversing the negative impact of COVID-19 across the country and ensure equal access to essential health services through social and economic analytics.
“It is geared towards ensuring proactive early recovery and social protection activities, including behavioural change communication messages, targeting vulnerable groups.
“Sokoto State was selected as one of the states in the North West that benefited from the project with overall coordination by the UNFPA Kaduna sub-office.
“The programme is to orient and train a pool of vulnerable adolescents (boys, girls, and women), on the use of face masks, in other to strengthen the COVID -19 response.
“The project focused on three high burdened Local Government Areas (LGAs), that comprised Wamakko, Sokoto South and Dange-Shuni,
“the programme achievements include distribution of PPEs and consumables in three LGAs, and provision of essential (Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) services, including Family Planning (FP) and COVID-19 related supports”, She listed.
Mrs. Enueze also said other services comprised support to community champions and youth networks, to develop community action plans and become COVID-19 Youth Ambassadors.
She also listed other activities as training of health facility workers, including private hospitals, on risk mitigation and protective measures to institute IPC protocols, organising talk shows and phone-in programmes, including jingles in three different radio stations in Sokoto State.
Responding after receiving the items the Director, Public Health in Sokoto State Ministry of Health, Dr. Abdurrahman Ahmad commended the UNFPA for the gesture and assured it of judicious use of the items to safeguard citizen’s health.
He explained that the items would be distributed to UNFPA supported health facilities, as well as to others with high priority needs, to improve public health.
Dr. Ahmad explained that the UNFPA had been supporting the Sokoto government on Visco Vagina Fistula (VVF), Family Planning, and Maternal Services, including the provision of maternal waiting rooms.
“We look further to partner with UNFPA on expanding Family Planning Services, as people are becoming more aware and demands for the services are going higher,” Ahmad said.
According to him, the present donations of Liquid Hand Wash, hand sanitisers, face shields, and other items, will also augment efforts towards containing the gastroenteritis outbreak that is affecting some parts of the state.